Chicago

by (@emilyexton)

Dreamgirls Will Never Leave You, But Are Beyoncé And Jennifer Hudson Performing At The Academy Awards? Maybe!

Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson Oscars Movie Musical Tribute

We thought we were lucky simply by having a chance to watch the superwoman that is Adele return to the stage, trading high-fives with 007 and making other nominees cringe at their own acceptance speeches. The Academy Awards is typically Hollywood’s night, showering films and their respective performers with love and a 360 GlamCam, but more recently, music has been finding a way in to the big show more and more.

Part of that trend is the Academy’s planned tribute to the movie musical (amazing, amazing idea) which will take place at this year’s show on Sunday, February 24 (ugh, not soon enough!). Despite the rich canon of excellent examples–do everyone a favor and rid your mind of Nine and Rent–the focus will fall largely on recent screen adaptations. So don’t expect Hugh Jackman to launch into “Trouble,” although I am willing to lend this idea to a casting record for a price to be determined later.

Films like Chicago and Dreamgirls will be featured in the tribute, as well as one of this year’s big contenders, Les Misérables. The former arguably brought the genre–barreling–into the 21st century, while Dreamgirls put Beyoncé on the big screen and made us forget Jennifer Hudson was an American Idol reject–still hard to believe after this. Yes, Harold Hill may have to wait, but if you’ve dreamed a dream that Wolverine and Queen Bey might one day share the stage, you could be in luck.

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Patrick Stump and Lupe Fiasco Rep Chicago, So We Count Down The Five Best Chicago Anthems

When we first heard “This City”, the new single from Patrick Stump‘s forthcoming solo album Soul Punk, we realized it was entering an exclusive club. The song, which premiered on the A.V. Club and features Lupe Fiasco, is an ode to the city of Chicago, an underheralded American metropolis if there ever was one (musically, anyway). Certainly, the Second City has its regional anthems, like the Chicago-house dyad of “Can You Feel It” and “The Percolator” (not to mention Frankie Knuckles tracks like “Your Love,” which was sampled for Animal Collective‘s “My Girls”) and the gotta-dance juke-gone-pop freakout of Dude ‘N Nem‘s “Watch My Feet.” But while New York City, for example, has been a musical muse to practically everyone from Tin Pan Alley to the present (including the band Chicago), the city of Chicago is, for its size, lacking in crowd-unifying refrains.

Which is not to say that there are none. Chicagoans need not resort to the Chi-town rework of LMFAO‘s “I’m In Miami, Trick”; there is a small but significant pantheon of Chicago songs, which Stump’s new single joins:

5. Sufjan Stevens, “Chicago”
The centerpiece of Sufjan Stevens‘s 2005 concept album about Illinois, aptly titled Illinois, “Chicago” quickly became a fan favorite that closed out the artist’s live sets, despite never being a “single” as such. Stevens would release three alternate versions of the song on the b-sides collection The Avalanche. The song resonated outside the city as well: Snow Patrol mentioned the song in the lyrics of their own “Hands Open,” Little Miss Sunshine featured the song on its soundtrack, and Chiddy Bang sampled it for “All Things Go.”

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